Historical Tourist Attractions in El Salvador

El Salvador is nestled in the heart of Central America, and it’s renowned for its enchanting blend of history, culture, and natural beauty.  Although it’s the smallest country in the region, this isn’t to say that it doesn’t have a huge amount of historical significance. In fact, El Salvador boasts a wealth of historical tourist attractions, including ancient archaeological sites and colonial towns. From this, tourists are offered a captivating glimpse into the storied past of El Salvador. 

Historical Tourist Attractions Around the World

From the scene of Mary Jane Kelly death to stunning religious buildings, the world is packed full of amazing tourist attractions, and there isn’t one that’s like the other. While we’re all familiar with the most famous historical tourist attractions in the world, El Salvador has some real hidden gems that will rival the most well-known pieces of history across the globe. To that end, discover the top historical tourist attractions in El Salvador below.  

San Salvador

First and foremost is the bustling capital city of San Salvador. While it now appears to be a modern city, it’s still massively steeped in history when considering the traces of its colonial past that are intermingling with contemporary life. Perhaps the most iconic landmark in the city is the Metropolitan Cathedral, which dates back to the 19th century. It’s a majestic structure with towering spires and intricate architecture, which serves as a testament to the country’s Catholic heritage. 

Downtown San Salvador
San Salvador Downtown. Image by MITURElSalvador.

Joya de Ceren

Joya de Ceren is often referred to as the “Pompeii of the Americas” and is a UNESCO World Heritage site. This site offers a fascinating glimpse into everyday life pre-Columbian times, and during 600 AD, it was buried under volcanic ash. The ruins remain preserved, meaning tourists are provided with an insight into the daily activities of the ancient Maya people. From dwellings to agricultural fields, the village is frozen in time and allows visitors to step into history.


Tazumal is another testament to El Salvador’s rich Maya heritage, allowing visitors to continue that journey back in time. Tazumal can be found in the western department of Santa Ana, which features impressive pyramids and structures dating back over a thousand years. The towering pyramid of Tazumal is the focal point of the site, and it’s adorned with intricate cravings. As a result, visitors are provided with panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.


Suchitoto provides visitors with a taste of colonial charm, which is why they so often flock to this picturesque town. It sits among lush hills, pristine lakes, cobblestone streets, colonial architecture, and vibrant art galleries. The historic gem of the town is the Santa Lucia Church, which has a whitewashed façade and a baroque-style altar, making it a must-visit for all history enthusiasts. Similarly, Suchitoto is a gateway to the nearby Cerron Grande reservoir, in which visitors can embark on boat tours to explore the scenic beauty of the region.

Suchitoto El Salvador

Ruta de las Flores

If you’re looking to immerse yourself in El Salvador’s cultural heritage, then the Ruta de las Flores is the place to do it. The Ruta de las Flores offers a captivating journey through quaint villages and vibrant landscapes, and the scenic route winds its way through lush coffee plantations, colonial towns, and indigenous communities. This provides travelers with a glimpse into the country’s rich traditions, wherein they can also explore artisan workshops, sample local cuisine, and marvel at the vibrant murals that adorn the streets.

El Salvador has a lot to offer to history buffs and travel enthusiasts, meaning it should be placed on everyone’s travel bucket list.